McKissick Family

Our ancestors in Scotland were staunch Presbyterians, affiliated with the Campbells of Argyle against the Pretender in 1745. The feud between Argle and Montrose was so bitter that many of the Campbells, McKisicks and our kinsmen, the McGregors, left Scotland and went to Ireland about the time Prince Charles took possession of Edinburg. Probably between 1750 and 1760, they migrated from Ireland to America and settled first in Pennsylvania. They did not long remain there and with many others who migrated with the McKisicks moved from Pennsylvana to North Carolina. Our McKisicks settled on one of the rivers in Lincoln County where they had a fine farm.

Our lineage here begins with Daniel McKisick, his son, John McKisick and his grandson John Wilson McKissick.

John McKisick

Daniel McKisick, Sr

Daniel came to America with his parents when he was around 10 years of age or younger. It is believed his father was Robert McKisick. Daniel was not known until he married Jane Wilson in Lincoln County, North Carolina in 1776 and was about twenty-seven years of age. They were married by the Rev. Lyle of the Sugar Creek Presbyterian Church. He established his home in Lincoln County (now Gaston County), North Carolina. He was a neighbor of General Joseph Dickson.

During the Revolution, Daniel McKisick raised a company, of which he was made Captain, and they were mustered into the North Carolina Line. In 1780, Battle of Ramseur's Mill Sign Daniel McKisick was involved in the Battle of Ramseur's Mill. You can read about it here.

A note about Captain Daniel McKissick who was wounded early in the action, being shot through the top of the shoulder; and finding himself disabled, went from the battleground about 80 poles to the west. About the time the firing ceased he met ten of the Tories coming from a neighboring farm, where they had been until the sound of the firing started them. They were confident their side was victorious, and several of them knowing Captain M'Kissick, insulted him and would have used him ill, but for Abra[ha]m Keener Sr., one of his neighbors, who protected and took him prisoner. While marching on towards the battle ground Keener kept lamenting, "That a man so clever and such a good neighbor and of such good sense should ever be a rebel." He continued his lecture to Captain M'Kissick until they came where the Whigs were formed. Keener looking around and seeing so many strange faces, said, "Hey, boys, I believe you has got a good many prisoners here." Immediately a number of guns were cocked, and Captain M'Kissick, though much exhausted by loss of blood, had to exert himself to save the lives of Keener and party.

From 1798 until his death, Daniel McKisick was granted a pension for one-half pay as captain, the rank he held when wounded in 1780. A certificate dated July 4, 1781, showing that a Jacob Massy had procured a substitute for six months was signed by "Daniel McKisick, Lieutenant-Colonel." This shows the rank he held at that time. William F. Collier, Comptroller of North Carolina, March 17, 1745, certified that the name Daniel McKisick appear on book marked "I" as having been Lieutenant-Colonle of Militia.

In 1782, Daniel McKisick was Chairman of a commission of eight leading me to "affix a place for the courthouse and the public buildings of the said county of Lincoln, North Carolina." From 1780 to 1789 he served allternately in the House of Representatives and the Senate of North Carolina. In 1803, the family left North Carolina and moved to Tennessee. They settled on a farm about seven miles south of Shelbyville, Bedford County. He is listed as one of the early settlers of Bedford County. He was appointed as one of seven commissioners to select a county seat for the nearly formed county in 1807. He was also the first county circut clerk for Bedford county.

That the family suffered because of Daniel McKisick's devotion to the cause of liberty is shown in the explanation that his wife made to Congress in 1841 when she asked for a pension. She stated that in Lincoln County the majority of the inhabitants adhered to the British cause, and soon became the deadly and uncompromising enemies of the few who expoussed the cause of American Liberty, that in consideration of his devoted stand for his country's freedom, her husband became obnoxious to the parties called Tories, many of whom were destitute of the magnanimity of British soldiers. They were in fact and in practice ruthless robbers, having at different times stolen upon her dwelling and when failing to seize the person of her husband did gratify their vengeance by the most wanton robbery, more than once take property that she greatly needed. At one time

Daniel and Jane McKisick they carried away her wearing apparel and bed-clothing with articles which she needed for support of herself and her little children. Mrs Jane McKisick was pensioned at the rate of $175 per annum until her death. In 1839, Mrs. Jane McKisick went with her children to Arkansas and remained there until her death July 4, 1844. The family came with the Yell family. Archibald Yell was a prominent Governor of Arkansas, member of congress and a Brigadier General in the Mexican War. Jane McKisick is buried at Centerton Cemetery, Centerton, Arkansas She was the daughter of James and Margaret Wilson.

Obituary of Daniel McKisick

"Died at his residence in Bedford County, Tennessee, on 11-19-1818 at the age of 69, Colonel Daniel McKisick. He was a native of North Carolina and emigrataed to this country in 1803. The strict integrity which marked all of his dealings, the good sense which early distinguished him and his unremiting exertion to promote the public good, would not long remain unnoticed in his native state. He acted a conspicuous part in the Revolutionary War in a military capacity, and received severe and disfiguring wounds, which rendered him an invalid the balance of his life. He was dangerously wounded in the conflict with the Tories at Ramseur's Mill, which deprived him almost entirely of the use of one arm. Zealously attached to the cause of his country, after the close of the war, he was called to fill various offices both under the government of the United States and under the government of North Carolina. In all his public life, the public good was his great object. Private evolument, the acquisition of wealth, never mingled with his public conduct; all those were sacrificed. His integrity, his patriotism and benevolence gave him a distinguised rank among his fellow citizens. The purity of his intentions was never questioned, even in the bitterness of party and political enmities. The duties of the various civil and military offices which he held at different times were always discharged with the most unblemished integrity. As father, husband and friend, he would never cease to be remembered. In a life longer than that generally allotted to man, he has left much to endear his memory to us, and nothing wherewith to reproach his reputation. To his numerous children he has left that which excels all worldly inheritance, a bright example of a well-spent life, a character untarnished and without reproach."

The children of Daniel and Jane Wilson McKisick

John Wilson McKissick

Mary McKissick Barry

Our closest McKissick ancester is Elizabeth Lamb McKissick who married David William Barry on 22 November 1872 in Bosque County, Texas. She was the daughter of John Wilson McKisick and Sarah McGary. She was born in June of 1855 in Bosque County, Texas. Her father John Wilson McKisick was born in 1807 in Old Buncombe County, North Carolina which later became Lincoln County. His parents were John McKisick and Sarah Bonham whose ancestors came to America on the Mayflower and cousins to James Butler Bonham of the Alamo. John Wilson received his middle name from his grandmother, Jane Wilson who married Daniel McKisick.

John Wilson McKisick

John Wilson McKisick left his home in South Carolina and went to Mississippi and joined with Felix Huston and his South Carolina settlers in the fight for Texas Indepentance from Mexico. In 1837, they arrived well after the Battle of San Jacinto in which the Mexican President General Santa Anna had already ceded defeat and, in effect, granted Texas her independence.1 In 1838 John W is located in Washington on the Brazos. It is here that he obtained license to marry a Sarah Early on November 15, 1837.2 Unfortunely Sarah Early dies 4 August 1839 at the age of 15 years, 10 months most likely due to childbirth and is buried in a small family cemetery called the Dever-Early-Pankey Cemetery in Washington County.3

John W married again on 28 Sept 1839, this time to Sarah McGary Wright4 who is a widow with one child, James C. Wright. James C Wright lived with his aunt and uncle, Daniel Boone and Anne McGary Friar. Sarah may have lived in Goliad as early as 1832 as Mrs. Wright. Interesting to note on 20 March 1836 during the Texas Revolution Sarah left with her family which included her mother, Bridget Lamb (her father had already died in Opelousas, Louisiana) her sisters, Mary Eleanor and Elizabeth and one brother, Edward (who was killed by comanches in 1840) ahead of the invading Mexican Army. The entire town of Washington fled down river to Grace's Plantation crossed with Houston's army then moved East with the Texas Force toward the Trinity and Sabine Rivers. This was known as the Runaway Scrape. Probably because of the death of her husband, James Wright, in the San Jacinto Battle, she was granted bounty land for his service of 1 league (4,428 acres) and 1 labor of land (177 acres). This particular survey was located on the cancelled league of a John R. Williams. The league, referred to as "the John R. Williams or Sarah McKissick League," is the only one in the area which carries two names. It acquired Sarah McKissick's name through a first class headright grant of one league and one labor of land made to her in the District Court of Washington County in 1851." John R. Williams, one of Austin's Old Three Hundred received a league and labor of land in Austin's Colony on either January or July 29, 1824. In December 1830 the ayuntamiento at San Felipe heard reports from a committee appointed to inquire into titles made to settlers in the first colony; they learned that Williams had located his land on Clear Creek but had not developed his league, that he had cultivated his labor and had disposed of it. A duplicate certificate was issued on August 17, 1863, at which time the land was sold and transferred to William R. Baker for $2,000. The instrument, Patent No 221, Vol 17 indicated Baker (the buyer) as the assignee of Sarah McKissick, but the patent remained in the original grantee's name (McKissick). The transfer to Baker was made in Bosque County with "at our farm" written above the signatures of Sarah McKissick and J. W. McKissick. Interestingly, on the transfer there is a statement that Sarah was "examined" privately by the county clerk and that she has executed the transfer "...without fear or control from her husband, and of her own free will and accord.." The description of the property in 1863 located it in Harris and Galveston Counties on Clear Creek. John Owen's house and summit Station on the Galveston, Houston and Henderson Railroad were used as markers; and the descibed property crossed Mary's Bayou, Chigoe Bayou and Cowher's Bayou. Between the year 1824, when the league of land was granted to John R. Williams, and 1863, when the Sarah McKissick patent was sold to William R. Baker, a lot of Texas history transpired. ...Around 1890, after many transactions, the owner of a good share of the John R. Williams or Sarah McKissick League was a man named John Charles League.

In 1838 John W was on the tax list and owned land. It was the delegates to the Texas Constitutional Convention in March 1836 at Washington-on-the Brazaos who awarded first Class Headright Grants to "all persons in Texas, on the day of the Declaration of Independence." Heads of families were entitled to one league and one labor of public land (4605 acres and single men 17 years of age or older to one- third league (1476 acres) To qualify for one of those grants the applicant was required to take the following oath: "I do solemnly swear that I was a resident citizen of Texas at the date of the Declaration of Independence, that I did not leave the country during the campaigns of the spring of 1836, to avoid a participation in the struggle, that I did not refuse to participate in the war, and that I did not aid or assist the enemy, that I have not previously recived a title to any quantum (amount) of land, and I conceive myself justly entitled, under the Constitution and Laws to the quantity of land for which I now apply." In addition, two creditable witnesses were required to swear under oath that the applicant was in Texas on March 2, 1836 and to confirm his marital status. A fee of $5.00 was required--half paid to the clerk who processed the application and the rest divided among the member of the Board of Land Commissioner present.

John W was sheriff of Feyette County i n 1945. One of the judies of a sheriff was to be the tax collorector.

One of the first persons recorded to have come and built a cabin between Steele and Cedron Creeks was John McKissick. In 1849 he came from Waco with his family, but they stayed only a short while before returning. He kept his land, built more houses, and in 1853, they all returned to stay. It is believed that John W built either the first or second hotel which was constructed in Waco, and then came to Bosque County in 1847. At that time he purchased a league of land for twenty-five (25 cents) an acre between Steels and Cedron Creeks where Steels Creek runs into the Brazos River. He traded his hotel in Waco for the land he acquired in Bosque County. He built a log house with a shed room on this land, but because the area was so sparsely settled and the Indians were hostile at that time, he went back to Waco. Two years later he returned to Bosque County with his family and built two more similar houses. One house served as living quarters, one as a kitchen and dining room, and the third as a guest house. Each room had its own fireplace. Major George B Erath, a famous Texan often stopped overnight and sometimes for several days at the McKissick place. A branch of the Old Chisholm Trail ran about 500 yards in front of the place.

Old McKissick home

John W and Sarah had one son and four daughter. The son was Ed McKissick, who at one time served as Tax collector of Bosque County and died while in office. He gave each of his children acreage from the league of land he owned in Bosque County. The remainder was sold to settlers. J E McKissick, now of Meridian, a grandson of John W. and a son of Ed McKissick, still owns a farm contained in the original league. E.J.W. Ogden, following his discharge from the Confederate Army in 1864, came to work for John W McKissick. In the latter part of 1865 he married John W.'s daughter Carrie. This couple lived most of their married life at the old John W McKissick home place. Tragedy struck in 1875 when three of their seven children drowned in the Brazos River. One son, A.E. Ogden, now of Clifton, lived there with his family until 1932 at which time the remaining McKissick land and home were sold by the Ogden heirs to Will C. Pallmeyer, of Meridain, who still owns the land.

John Wilson McKissick died in April of 1883 in Bosque County, Texas and Sarah died in 1880 in Bosque County, Texas. In 1880 they were living with their daughter Carrie Ogden and their children. Their graves were probably moved from Fowler to the Kimball Cemetary on Highway 174 by the Army corps of Engineers when Lake Whitney was created in 1950. There were 639 graves moved and 420 were unknown.


  1. Felix Huston from Wikipedia
  2. Austin Colony Pioneers including History of Bastrop, Fayette, Grimes, Montgomery, and Washington Counties, Texas and Their Earliest Settler by Worth S. Ray, publihed in 1949 by the author, Box 1111, Austin, Texas
  3. FindaGrave:
  4. A letter written in 1898 from San Francisco, California, by Judge Lewis David McKisick, grandson of Daniel McKisick I

Austin Colony Pioneers including History of Bastrop, Fayette, Grimes, Montgomery, and Washington Counties, Texas and Their Earliest Settler by Worth S. Ray, publihed in 1949 by the author, Box 1111, Austin, Texas

Clifton Record--Centinnial Editon, Clifton, Texas, Friday, April 20, 1954,

Fayette County, Her History and Her People, by F. Lotto; publlished by the Author at Schulenburg, Texas, 1902 Sheriffs

Bosque Primer, An Introductiion to The History of Bosque County by Rebecca D. Radde, Copyright 1976 by Rebecca D. Radde, Library of Congress Catalog Card No. 76-6752.

Texas, U.S., Select County Marriage Records, 1837-1965

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